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Clove-pickled Seckel pears

Clove-pickled Seckel pears
Ricardo DeAratanha / Los Angeles Times

My Christmas fantasy always involves dispensing with gifts, stopping the music and replanting all those doomed trees. But there's no way I would pass up baking cookies with ginger, doctoring eggnog with brandy or indulging in any of the other ... Read more

Total time: 40 minutes, plus overnight marination | Serves 8 to 10
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon whole cloves
  • 1 small cinnamon stick, broken in half
  • 1 teaspoon white peppercorns
  • Juice of 1 large lemon
  • 16 to 18 small Seckel pears, ripe but not soft

Step 1Combine the sugar, vinegar, cloves, cinnamon and peppercorns in a medium saucepan with one-half cup water. Bring to a boil, stirring. Lower the heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the mixture is syrupy, about 15 minutes.

Step 2Stir the lemon juice into a bowl of cold water. Peel, halve and core the pears and place them in the lemon water to keep from turning brown.

Step 3Place the pears in the pan with the syrup. Cover and cook over medium heat, turning occasionally, until tender, about 15 minutes.

Step 4Cool the pears in the syrup, then transfer both to a bowl. Chill overnight before draining and serving.


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